[MUD-Dev] DESIGN: Why do people like weather in MMORPGs?

Johan A asteroid at rocketmail.com
Mon Dec 20 11:26:46 CET 2004

 --- Mike Rozak <Mike at mxac.com.au> wrote:

> Do players just want weather for eye candy? Or do the MMORPGs and
> reviewers use nighttime and weather as a checkbox item in order to
> differentiate themselves. (Just like some sound cards have 20-bit
> sound, as opposed to 16-bit sound. Not to be cynical, but the
> noisy power supply in a computer only provides 13-14 bits of sound
> no matter how good your DAC.)

I would love to see weather have an impact on the world. I think in
early AO, you could be hit by lightning!  Also, to some extent,
Shadowlands for AO implemented weather effects where you needed a
certain type of glasses (??) to be able to enter penumbra and boots
to withstand the heat in Inferno.

Weather adds more realism to the world just like being able to shoot
glass in an FPS or kick a bucket around.  Adding weather has an
impact on performance often and maybe having advanced effects would
complicate the games too much, something that is untrendy in todays
MMO designs where everything is made simple to reach out to a bigger
crowd. If this is right or wrong is another discussion though ;)

Saga of Ryzom has seasons (at least it had it in beta) and that is a
very nice touch. As for WoW's real world clock...well I am not a big
fan of that since I am doomed to play at night only and will never
see the sun except for weekends. Experiencing the same thing at work
in RL is bad enough. The difference in light is not much some may
argue but then why have night at all? I think it's an example of
something looking good on paper but not working out all that well in

I like the monster depending on season too. Imagine a dungeon only
accessible at winter time when some huge beast guarding the entrance
is sleeping. Say every 1 month or so? Or how about undertaking a
crossing of a desert/mountain requiring 2 hours or more with proper
clothing, water, fire etc to get to another continent where only
some metal/herbs grow used to make certain items.

This though probably go against the casual design that we are seeing
more of today. Still I hope we will see something like it one day.

- Johan
MUD-Dev mailing list
MUD-Dev at kanga.nu

More information about the mud-dev-archive mailing list